Tyche Hendricks: Field Poll shows Californians want Bush immigration scheme
Tyche Hendricks lets us know about a new Field Poll supposedly showing wide support for "guest" workers and an amnesty scheme. It certainly doesn't look good, although there appear to be a few problems both with the poll and with the San Francisco Chronicle's write-up. The PDF with the apparent questions is in this PDF. Bear in mind that it's not clear that what's in there are the actual questions that were asked.
First, the article is subtitled "Majority supports Bush proposals for immigration reform", but the survey was done between March 20 and 31. Bush's latest immigration scheme wasn't even leaked until March 29. And, all the amnesty scams heretofore discussed have endless features and loopholes that can't be covered in a simple poll; whether the current Bush scheme matches up to this poll is a bit doubtful in places.
Second, the article says:
California voters increasingly oppose a federal plan for 700 more miles of border fence -- with just 37 percent favoring it this year, down from 47 percent last April...
But, according to the PDF this was the question that was asked:
Build a wall along major sections of the U.S.-Mexico border
A "wall" sounds a bit more harsh than a "fence", which is probably why they used that; on the other hand they could have said something like, "build more fencing such as is currently in place in San Diego and other places".
Third, the article says:
...just 53 percent of those polled voiced support the current policy of federal agents rounding up, detaining and deporting illegal immigrants.
From the PDF, here's the supposed question:
Continue the new policy of having federal immigration agents round up, detain and deport immigrants found to be living here illegally
Except, of course, that's not a "new" policy. In fact - shocking as it may be to Hendricks and the rest of the illegal immigration-supporting infrastructure - that's their job. There is a new program (Return to Sender) which that infrastructure has fought mightily against, but that's not a new policy.
The last question might have been designed to determine, "is our pro-illegal immigration propaganda which has demagogued small raids designed to deport criminal and fugitive aliens working?"
And, one wonders exactly how we can square the conflict between those who want to fine employers, but not deport illegal aliens. Do those who support large fines but no deportations realize what they're supporting is tantamount to loose borders, where any illegal who can make it over the border will not be deported?
The poll does contain somewhat more straightforward questions which do have disturbingly high approval:
Create a program that would allow illegal immigrants who have been living in the U.S. for a number of years an opportunity to stay in this country and apply for citizenship if they have a job, learned English and paid back taxes... [and] Create temporary worker programs for illegal immigrants that would legalize their status and allow future immigrants to work in this country
What's needed there is education about the impacts those programs would have, such as by encouraging even more illegal immigration.
(Also, Brandon Bailey of InsideBayArea subtitles his report the surprisingly similar "California favors Bush plan: mix of amnesty, enforcement". Why, it's like they're reading from the same talking points.)